Rings and Things Confirmed for Starlet

Maiden winner Rings and Things was confirmed a starter for the Dec. 21 Hollywood Starlet (gr. I) by trainer Patrick Biancone Thursday after the chestnut daughter of Thunder Gulch and the Far North mare Andriana B. worked seven furlongs in 1:27 4/5 over Santa Anita's fast main track. The Kentucky-bred filly worked in company with stablemate Whoopi Cat, who was clocked getting the distance in 1:27 3/5.

Biancone believed Rings and Things wouldn't be ready for her stakes debut in the Starlet after just a maiden victory in two starts to her credit, but changed his mind after watching the filly train over the past few weeks.

"It all depends on how they improve," Biancone said. "And she's improved enough."

Rings and Things' win was at the Starlet's distance of 1 1/16 miles. She was second in her debut for earnings of $33,600. Hall of Famer Mike Smith will be aboard the filly in the Starlet.

Grade II winner Whoopi Cat was declared from Starlet consideration after Thursday's work and will instead start in the Jan. 19 Santa Ynez Stakes (gr. II) at Santa Anita. The $150,000 event for sophomore fillies will be contested at seven furlongs over the main track.

Whoopi Cat hasn't raced since winning the Adirondack Stakes (gr. II) at Saratoga on Aug. 11. Undefeated in two starts, the daughter of Tale of the Cat and Whoopi (by Sky Filou) has banked $115,800.

Other probable Starlet starters include Moccasin Stakes winner Victory U. S. A. (Julie Krone), California Cup Juvenile Fillies winner House of Fortune (Alex Solis), Cal Cup Juvenile Fillies runner-up Silent Sighs, Dixie High (Victor Espinoza), Hollywood Story (Patrick Valenzuela) and Wildwood Flower.

Biancone also sent out Malibu Stakes (gr. I) hopeful Zavata for a five-furlong work in :59 1/5. Santa Anita's opening-day feature will be the 3-year-old son of Phone Trick's final career start before heading off to stallion duty at Walmac International in Lexington, Ky.